De Vries, L.J. and E.J.L. Chappin: Power play: simulating the interrelations between an electricity market and a CO2 market in an on-line game, pp. 1-11. In: Proceedings of the 33st IAEE International Conference, The Future of Energy: Global Challenges, Diverse Solutions, 6-9 June (2010). At: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
An electricity market simulation game was developed to help students, market analysts and policy makers understand the short and long-term dynamics of electricity markets. In the game, small groups of participants play the roles of competing electricity generation companies. They need to bid their electricity into a power exchange and decide about investing in generation plant. They operate in an uncertain environment, not only because they do not know their competitors’ strategies, but also because fuel prices, wind and the availability of power plant vary. In the game, a full business cycle is simulated, so participants experience the effects of their investment decisions. A first extension of the game is a CO2 market, which effectively changes the rules of the game midway. This way, players learn to analyze the impacts of policy instruments and policy uncertainty upon investors. Experience indicates that the simulation game creates a high level of involvement by participants, that results in much deeper insight than more traditional didactic methods. The improved understanding that the game provides can also be used to convey insights in related topics, such as variations of the policy measures that were modeled in the game.